Osman Karabegović

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Osman Karabegović
Osman Karabegovic.jpg
3rd President of the Executive Council of the People's Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
In office
Preceded by Avdo Humo
Succeeded by Hasan Brkić
Personal details
Born (1911-09-07)7 September 1911
Banja Luka, Condominium of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austro-Hungarian Empire
Died 24 June 1996(1996-06-24) (aged 84)
Belgrade, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Citizenship Yugoslav
Political party League of Communists of Yugoslavia
Profession Politician, soldier
Military service
Allegiance  Yugoslavia
Service/branch Yugoslav Partisans
Years of service 1941–1945
Rank Major General
Awards Order of the People's Hero
Order of the People's Liberation
Order of the Yugoslav Flag
Order of the Partisan Star
Order of Bravery
Partisan Memorial

Osman Karabegović (7 September 1911 – 24 June 1996) was a Yugoslav and Bosnian communist politician and a recipient of the Order of the People's Hero. He joined the Communist Party of Yugoslavia in 1932. In World War II, he was one of the leaders of the Yugoslav Partisans in Bosnia-Herzegovina. After the war, he held various posts in the Socialist Yugoslavia. In 1972, after he criticised the lack of democracy in the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, he was expelled from the League of Communists of Yugoslavia.[1] The Communist leadership also associated him with the Muslim nationalists who were at that time agitating to designate Bosnia-Herzegovina a Muslim republic.[2] He died in Belgrade in 1996.

Early life[edit]

Karabegović was born on 7 September 1911 in Banja Luka. He attended gymnasium there and was an active member of the "Mlada Jugoslavija" association (English: Young Yugoslavia). He joined the Communist Party of Yugoslavia in 1932[1] and in the same year was expelled from school because he participated in a students' strike. He finished the last of his classes of gymnasium in Sarajevo.

Because of his activity in the Communist Party and SKOJ he was arrested. He was released from prison under the pressure of public. In 1933, Karabegović entered the Veterinary Faculty in Zagreb. Again, he actively participated in the work of SKOJ and the Communist Party. He was arrested for the same reasons a few times by police in Zagreb. In 1935 he was ordered to return in Banja Luka. During 1936-1937 he studied medicine at the University of Zagreb and became a member of the Students' Committee of SKOJ and a member of the Action Committee in Belgrade. He participated in various demonstrations against the regime of Alexander I of Yugoslavia for which he was again arrested few times.

World War II[edit]

After World War II started in Yugoslavia, Karabegović returned to Banja Luka and became a member of the Regional Committee of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia for Bosanska Krajina.

He participated in organizing a rebellion against the Axis forces on 4 July 1941 in Šehitluci near Banja Luka. This was the final agreement by the Communists to begin a rebellion in Bosanska Krajina. In the second half of June 1941 Karabegović visited Prijedor, Bosanski Novi, Krupa and Bihać where he held a few meetings with Partisan military officers and the Party's committees and transferred decisions made by the Communist Party about plans of a rebellion.[3] In the beginning of July 1941, Karabegović, along with Josip Mažar Šoša, visited Bosanski Petrovac and Dvor and formed committees in preparation for the rebellion.

On the day when the rebellion started, 25 July 1941, Karabegović participated in consultations in Orlovci near Prijedor where the Communist Party made a schedule for the rebellion. Karabegović was sent along with Dr. Mladen Stojanović and Josip Mažar Šoša to Kozara for organizing the rebellion.[4] In August 1941, when the Second Detachment of Bosanska Krajina was formed, Karabegović became its political commissar. In the beginning of November 1941, Karabegović participated in military consultations held in the Partisan Supreme Command for Bosnia and Herzegovina of Romanija. He was one of the organizers of the regional party's consultations in Bosanska Krajina which was held on 22 February 1942 in Kneževo. In those consultations, Karabegović became a political commissar of the Operational Headquarters for Bosanska Krajina, and when the First Bosnian Corps was formed at the end of 1942, he continued the same duties there. Throughout the war, Karabegović held various posts, he was the Secretary of the Regional Committee of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia for Bosanska Krajina, a member of the Regional Committee for Communist Party of Yugoslavia and a member of the Supreme Command of the Yugoslav Partisans for Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was also an alderman in the First and Second Session of the AVNOJ and in all of the sessions of ZAVNOBiH.

Communist Yugoslavia[edit]

After the war he held various posts. From 1946 to 1974 he was the envoy of the Assembly of the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia and from 1947 to 1956 he was a member of the Federal Government. Karabegović was also the President of the Executive Council of the People's Republic of Yugoslavia (de facto Prime Minister) from 1956 to 1963. Karabegović was a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, and from 1948 he was a member of the Presidency of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia. On 23 July 1952 he became a recipient of the People's Hero of Yugoslavia. In 1972 Karabegović was dismissed along with Avdo Humo from their posts for alleged Muslim "exclusivism" and "nationalism"[2][5] and banned from the Communist Party of Yugoslavia.

On 24 June 1996, Karabegović died in Belgrade and was buried in the walkway of National Heroes in Novo groblje.


  1. ^ a b Andjelic, Neven (2003). Bosnia-Herzegovina: The End of a Legacy. Routledge. p. 46. ISBN 9781135757144. 
  2. ^ a b Ramet, Sabrina P. (2006). The three Yugoslavias. Indiana University Press. p. 291. ISBN 0-8047-0857-6. 
  3. ^ (Serbo-Croatian) Mihić, Ljubo. Kozara: priroda, čovjek, istorija. Dnevnik, 1987, p. 487
  4. ^ (Serbo-Croatian) Maglajić, Himka. Kazivanja o Kasimu Hadžiću, p. 62. Glas, 1982
  5. ^ Velikonja, Mitja (2003). Religious separation and political intolerance in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Texas A & M University Press. p. 226. ISBN 1-58544-226-7.